Welcome to The Cage

Down in the Ditch

22 Sast, 1816 – Sigil (cont’d)

Realizing that they weren’t too far from both the Mortuary (where Gerald had summoned by a fellow Necromancer) and Ragpicker’s Square (where Puma met the contact for his assassinations), the party emerged from the crypts below the Shattered Temple and headed towards the Ditch – the massive scar running the breadth of Sigil, and the defacto barrier between the Lower Ward and the Hive.

Winding through some of the narrow streets of the Lower Ward toward the sound of rushing water – the portal to Oceanus having been opened to wash out the accumulated filth of the Ditch, as well as providing clean water to the poorest-of-the-poor in Sigil – the group happened upon a group of locals staring intently at what appeared to be a traveling shadow-puppet show. Stopping to see what was interesting about it (and for Misty to pick a few pockets) the group felt a strange pull from the swirling pattern of lights used to cast the shadows. Fortunately (for the party _) they all shrugged off the effects of the Hypnotic Pattern being cast and watch with amusement as several rough-looking individuals emerged from behind the wagon to take up a ‘collection’ as the show continued.

When one of the men reached Gerald, perched atop one of his zombies, he was surprised to find the diminutive fiend had not fallen under the sway of the magic. Even more surprising, Gerald – and the rest of the party – expressed their appreciation and admiration for a such a clever grift. Receiving a ‘tip’ from the party for their efforts, the troupe quickly packed up and disappeared down a nearby alley before the crowd returned to their senses. The adventurers only managed to catch a partial glimpse of [name], the caster who was apparently running the operation before realizing that they should also be long gone before an angry group of a freshly-robbed citizens started looking for strangers to blame.

Minutes later, the group arrived at one of the few bridges that spanned the Ditch. Crossing over, they looked over the edge to see scaffolding along both sides of the urban canyon, with a number of Sigil’s less-fortunate collecting water (some generous Clerics further up top were offering to purify it for drinking purposes) and even bathing. Suddenly, out of the rushing water, a massive serpent burst forth, chomping down on a few unfortunates at the water’s edge. Apparently, a Brine Sea Serpent had come through the portal and was now in the Ditch.

Puma, Witherton, MIsty, and Earl (Witherton’s Man-at-Arms) attempted to strike at the beast from afar as Silt grabbed the diminutive Gerald and swooped in close to do some damage … right into massive blast of acid from the creature’s maw – even Misty got caught on the edge of the bridge above. The owl-woman and the quazit plunged into the water with the monstrosity and might have washed away had one of the party’s quick-thinking casters not used water-walking, allowing Silt to bob safely just above the water’s surface.

After another round or two of primarily-ranged attacks, and one more devastating – but ultimately non-fatal – blast of acid, the party found themselves trying to recover the body of the beast from the rapids rushing through the ditch in the hopes of scoring a big payday with Scaly Pete. Combining their powers, they managed to shrink the serpent and lifted it out of the Ditch using Tensor’s Floating Disk. Realizing they only had the situation under control temporarily, Silt (still carrying Gerald) flew quickly to the Mortuary and landed in the open space before it. Believing that a living creature would fetch a better price, they Revived it, only to catch one final acid blast (melting a couple of unfortunate bystanders) before being knocked into a coma – not dead, but not conscious.

As the rest of their party contended with the serpent, Puma, Misty and Earl traveled on foot through Ragpicker’s Square. Puma inquired of the locals as to the whereabouts of his contact. One of the rag pickers recognized the description and informed the Gloom Stalker that the body of a person matching such a description had been discovered, fairly mutilated, and delivered to the Mortuary (after being picked clean of anything valuable, of course). Hurrying over to the Mortuary, they reconnected with the rest of the party and ventured inside.

Gerald found Anatoli, the chief Necromancer, and followed him down into an all-to-familiar sub-basement, when he was shown – to his horror – an empty room. Apparently, the Vampire Illitihid had escaped.

Poking around in the chamber, it was discovered that a section of the wall had been deconstructed from the surrounding tunnels by having the mortar scraped out, then carefully re-stacked to look like an intact wall. In the passage outside, a dried puddle of blood revealed a parallel set of tracks that extended a few feet before ending by a bloody rag.

Getting a bad vibe, the party headed back upstairs to ponder the implications of the monster that was likely loose below the streets of Sigil. Contemplating the situation, they decided to look in the examination room where his former contact now lie, and discovered someone else inspecting the remains – a certain scruffy-looking private investigator: Celix Merstorff. Thinking, for some reason, that Celix had no life or need of income beyond the pittance they initially gave him to look into the Darkness (losing both his job and his house in the process), the group finally started putting two and two together and asked (and paid) the investigator to look into the Red Monks of the Hidden Kingdom – believing them to be Yet Another Vecna Cult (YAVC).

Turning to the body on the slab, which appeared to have been savaged down the torso by a wild animal, Gerald cast Speak With Dead. The corpse stated that its guts had been ripped out by an Orc tied to the smugglers who had hijacked a shipment of Elemental Bows. This group, it was believed, had been responsible for hiring Puma to assassinate Judge Tazrin Ulmidath, which he ultimately declined to do, leading to a second assassin being contract to silence him.

(cont’d)

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The Cryptkeeper

Gerald stood amid the carnage that resulted from the failed assassination attempt. Casting Create Undead, he felt more at ease being surrounded once again by zombies under his control. Puma, meanwhile, debated what to do with the corpse of his attempted killer – should he skin it and have Gerald send it walking through the streets of Sigil? Leave part of the remains with his one-time contact? Misty, having been mis-identified as Puma and nearly killed as a result, contented herself with slicing the assassin’s pinky finger off to keep as a reminder.

The group asked the Necromancer to see if he could extract any information about the killer using Speak With Dead, but the assassin, unfortunately, had only very recently taken up the contract and appeared to be working alone, having used the same contractor that Puma worked with.

In speculating why Misty might have been attacked, Puma revealed a bit about his career as a contract killer in Sigil: The contact would take out a personal add in the newspaper and embed a coded message announcing an opportunity. Most of the time, business would be conducted through asynchronous drop-offs and monetary transfers, but the contract on the judge had required an in-person meeting. Seeking to hide his identity, though not necessarily his race, Puma colored his fur and wore a cloak – coincidentally make himself look like Misty, whom he had not met up to that point.

Traveling to Ragpicker’s Square in the Hive (adjacent to the Mortuary, and perhaps the most wretched place in the most wretched ward in Sigil), Puma met with his contact – a man disguised as a one of the many derelicts digging through heaps of trash from around the multiverse. After identifying each other via a coded greeting about reading something interesting in the paper, the man revealed the target, the down payment – a hefty sum – and a special request: An orc’s tusk to be placed on the body upon completion of the task.

Back in the present, the party extended their search of the Shattered Temple to include the subterranean areas. The cellars and crypt, unfortunately, had long since been relieved of anything of value. Even the bodies in the crypt were too old to be much use for reanimation. Even the pair of withered and desiccated remains of a pair of Carrion Crawlers looked to have been collecting dust for decades.

Off in the distance, the faint, echoing sound of rushing water could suddenly be heard: It was the weekly opening of the portal to Oceanus that washed the urban cavern known as the Ditch clean and provided the Hive and part of the Lower Ward with the only fresh clean water the less mobile residents ever saw. Fearing that the crypt might be flooded – and fearing more being caught at night in the Shattered Temple, Gerald used Fabricate on the piles of lumber the group had stolen from the warehouse a few nights earlier to craft several sturdy doors with which to fortify the crypt, if needed.

As Gerald worked, Puma and Misty prowled the darkness, hoping to find something – anything – of value in the darkness. What they discovered was a faint green mist seeping through the bricks of the wall in the far corner of the crypt. Calling the rest of the party over, they warily eyed the wispy emanation. Attempts to ascertain either a Natural or Arcane cause proved futile; the mist was unnatural and not the result of a spell.

Silt sent her pet Alchemist Ooze over to investigate, but it wasn’t able to interact with the faint wisps. It wasn’t until Gerald sent a pair of zombies over with tools, dislodging some of the bricks, that a concentration of mist could spill forth – apparently drawing a significant portion of the Ooze’s vitality. The substance appeared to necromantic energy, trapped behind the wall. But what was it emanating from.

The zombies continued to tear at the wall, uncovering a vertically oriented sarcophagus that had been bricked up behind it. Within, the skeletal remains of what looked to be an Arcane Paladin of Aoskar – the long-dead god of portals whom the Lady of Pain had killed millennia ago – reclined quietly, radiating the deadly green mist. Fearing a deadly cloud of noxious fumes filling the catacombs, Witherton blasted the corpse with a Gust of Wind. As the moldering figure was buffeted about in the narrow confines of the sarcophagus, Gerald noticed what appeared to be a glowing version of the figure superimposed over the corpse, also being buffeted, but out of sync with its corporeal form.

The pile of bones and clothing crumpled in a heap, leaving the glowing spectral form of the long-dead paladin hovering menacingly. Looking up at the figures that had disturbed its slumber, it unleashed a powerful Cone of Cold, catching the entire party (conveniently standing in a line). All of Gerald’s zombies were frozen into a second death where they stood.

Puma fired arrows into it, backing up as Witherton charged forward and unleashed his Booming Blade. Gerald cast Bane, while Misty retreated to drink a healing potion. Enraged, the ghostly figure pointed at Witherton, the one who had hurt it the most and cast Blight, drawing the vitality out of the Aasimar and nearly killing him.

The party returned fire, both mundane and arcane, tearing into the Spectral Guardian. The being used its incorporeal movement to retreat, taking damage from Witherton’s Booming Blade in the process, and tried to flank the party through the columns of sarcophogai supporting the Temple above. Gerald, however, saw where it was moving and called the party’s attention to it. The cursed undead spirit would not get much a chance to do anything else as the adventurer’s gave it no quarter; the Guardian finally succumbing to Misty’s magical claws.

In the pile of bones and rags of its hidden resting place, the tomb raiders discovered a magical shield, bearing the crest Aoskar (Puma wisely deciding to cover this for use in public), some gemstones set in earrings and buttons, and a bag of gold coins from Sigil’s distant past. Gerald posited that the coins, while mere gold, would likely fetch a higher price per coin if they could find a knowledgable collector.

Not detecting anymore threats, the group settled in for a long rest. Several of them dreamed of massive chains clanking ominously in the darkness, but no misfortune befell the party.

22 Sast, 1816 – Sigil

The next morning, Gerald received a Sending from a fellow Necromancer: Anatoli needs you at the Mortuary, ASAP.

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The Disturbing Diary
In which Garrick kills some commoners

21 Sast, 1816 – Sigil

The party sat around the breakfast table in the Alehouse Drake, trying to figure out what to do. It felt like they were being pulled towards investigating the Gearsmith and his mysterious room full of crystals, but couldn’t definitively connect him to the darkness that plagued Sigil. There was a very real fear of getting in to a scrap (pun intended?) with a factory filled with a clockwork army and not come out of it.

Over the course of their discussion, a second alternative arose: the Shattered Temple. The place had an ominous reputation within the city, but could provide answers. At the very least, no one could think of any immediate threat s in exploring it to look for clues. After settling with Astrid for another month (?) of room and board, the group set out for Kelmen Demache’s townhouse, which contained a portal in its basement that would get them very close to the Shattered Temple without having to navigate the clogged streets and alleyways of the city.

Rounding the corner near the Demache estate, the group noticed yet another group of protestors – albeit smaller – demonstrating against the non-consentual use of elementals in ElemenTech products. It was decided that the party would go around back, rather than interact with the protestors, as they had done prior to their excursion to (and through) the Portal Gallery. As they headed towards the alley that would grant them access to the rear gate, Garrick thought it might be funny to mess with the protestors and cast Spike Growth … promptly killing seven of them, much to the horror of everyone present.

Hoping to get inside of the house before anyone could place them anywhere near the scene of the crime, they hurried to the back gate, where Witherton cast Friend on the scullery maid who happened to open the gate for them. Securing themselves an invitation inside, they met with Kelmen who was bemoaning the continued protests and started to say “I wish they’d all drop d-” where upon he was immediately shushed and it was strongly suggested that he stay out of sight of the doors and windows for at least the rest of the day.

Confused but ever helpful, the businessman consented (unlike the Elementals) to let the party use the portal in his basement to visit the Shattered Temple. A short while later, they stood on the perimeter of what appeared to be the most quiet and deserted place in Sigil. Broken walls and piles of rubble huddled under partially toppled spires – all that remained of the Lady’s wrath against Oskar, the self-proclaimed God of Portals from the distant past. Even now, after all those long centuries, a sense of quiet-yet-fearful reverence hung over the area like a blanket.

Searching the area, the party discovered that the temple wasn’t always quite as deserted as it now appeared. Towards the middle of the structure, amid some broken walls, a derelict camp sat, with small cold firepits and threadbare beds and blankets scattered around. The details of the scene were overshadowed by the quantity of dried blood that was splattered over the walls and floor. The combined skills of the party allowed them to discern that the blood was approximately two months old – around the time the whispers in the darkness began driving sentient creatures mad.

Further investigation revealed a journal, written in what appeared to be an educated hand, detailing a self-styled scholar’s attempts to learn more about the Lady of Pain. The writing began to deteriorate, however, as some sort of madness began to grow within the author, resulting in the final few entries of the journal sounding like the rants of a madman.

Within the text, a name – Mok’slyk – was referenced. Witherton, due to his arcane training in a school of lore, recognized the name as the Flan personification of magic, who was rumored to have personally trained Vecna, the Flan wizard-turned-lich-turned-god who once tried to re-write the multiverse using Sigil, before he was stopped by the Lady, supported by a group of adventurers, and cast into the Dark Dimension (Ravenloft) as punishment.

As the party discussed the implications of what was written in the journal, they were interrupted by a quartet of unsavory individuals looking to a collect a ‘temple rebuilding tax.’ Not bothering with pretense, the party immediately met them with hostility – Puma, Silt, and Earl (Witherton’s Knight attendant) laying into the n’er-do-wells.

Suddenly, seemingly out of nowhere, a cloaked figure rounded a nearby corner and charged Misty, driving the suspiciously wet tip of a shortsword into the tabaxi. “One does not simply skip out on a contract, tabaxi,” the assassin hissed. The surprise attack, combined with the powerful poison, felled the confused Misty in a single blow. The figure then tried to escape back around the corner, but Witherton gave chase, landing a blow with his Staff of Thunder and Lighting and stunning the assailant.

Despite the thugs landing several savage blows, made possible by their pack tactics, the PC’s (aided by a healed Misty, courtesy of Garrick) quickly whittled them down as Witherton attempted to blast the Assassin to dust, but opting to fall back to a safer position when his attack failed to kill her. Puma then rounded the corner to fire a couple shots, much to her confusion – as she had thought Misty was the target, but now not so sure. Instead, the Assassin rushed the Gloomstalker and nearly dropped him with another swipe of her poisoned shortsword (though, without benefit of surprising him) and attempting to escape.

Concerned at what might happen if she escaped, Witherton threw caution to the wind and gave chase, unleashing a massive strike that finally killed the would-be killer. As they looted the bodies, Puma discovered a contract with his name on it written in a familiar hand. It appeared that his contact had accepted a contract on him, no doubt related to his refusal to kill the Dragonborn judge in the Portal Gallery.

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Conversations, Choices, and Consequences

18 Sast, 1816 – Sigil

The party was back in Sigil, along with two score of Sigil’s upwardly mobile (speaking socio-economically). Evening was quickly giving way to night and the group attempted to settle in for at least one more night away from their beds. As the unprepared Harmonium Medic who had been keeping watch on the gallery over the past two days collected statements, people began to mingle. Witherton, determined to make the most of the good will the rescued party-goers still felt as a result of their enchantment at the carnival. Presenting Kelmen with a lengthy, itemized list of expenses – including costs for the ‘lost and/or missing’ equipment that came about from Hesken’s unfortunate demise – the wily Aasimar persuaded (and helped) the party’s benefactor to collect a monetary show of appreciation from the rescued attendees.

Meanwhile, the assassin Puma located his quarry – a golden dragonborn judge named Tazrin Ulmidath – and engaged him in conversation. The tabaxi learned that the judge was preparing to sentence one of the Orcish smugglers who had robbed part of the Harmonium’s shipment of elemental bows. It came out in during the trial that the accused Orc had his memory modified and could not provide much in the way of information on the group’s shadowy leader. Fidgeting with the orc tusk in his pocket that he was supposed to plant on the judge’s body upon killing him, Puma decided (for reasons known only to himself) that this was a contract he could not carry out.

Elsewhere, Garrick’s (now tempered) interests in mind-altering substances intersected with Thomar Kalderin’s role as the Sigil Stout Brewery’s owner and brewmaster. The unlikely pair hit it off and eventually parted ways with a promise of several kegs of Stout and a couple bottles of Dwarven Whiskey headed the Goliath’s way.

Silt found herself deeply interested in the latest work by Shanirith Eisen, the tiefling historian, who was telling Eupohria – the only other tiefling female (and, sadly, not a like-minded intellectual – about a mysterious rash of deicides that occurred 330 years ago. The owl woman jumped into the conversation upon hearing that Maanzecorian (sp?) was one of the killed powers, especially since she “knew of someone who had” experienced evidence of power granted by the Illithid deity some 20 years ago (in the Ravenloft sub-campaign). Shanirith seemed surprised, since Maanzecorian’s body was, by all accounts, still floating in the Astral Sea and the handful of Mindflayers she had managed to interview were all of one mind about the occurrence. Perhaps, she theorized, something was answering your ’friend’s’ prayers, she replied to Silt, but it wasn’t Maanzecorian.

Confused by why everyone was simply bedding down for the night instead of returning to their homes, Izerah, the Githzerai monk from Limbo who had accompanied the party back to Sigil, started to exit the building. Everyone freaked out and explained to her that something lived in the darkness at night that could drive people insane and/or kill them outright. Perplexed, she agreed to stay in doors. However, during the third watch of the night, she was roused by Puma, who hoped to perform an experiment using the monk’s ability to shape the chaos of Limbo. Unfortunately, the monk was unable to find anything in the darkness to shape; she was as perplexed by the unnatural darkness and whispers as everyone else.

The next morning, the group agreed to meet up back at the Drake after taking care of personal errands. Puma tried to sneak off to report in to his contact, but drew Misty’s attention – she got a promise from him that they would meet back up. Silt and Misty then wandered the Festhall district looking for the elven musician, hoping to get a lead on someone who could teach them to play the pipes (they were planning on buying a set of Pipes of the Sewer). Inspired by his new dwarven friend, Garrick decided to get some woodworking tools and try harvesting enough razorvine to make a barrel for brewing. Witherton and Gerald, accompanied by Zilia, head towards the Mortuary for Gerald to remove the unwanted passenger in Witherton’s abdomen. As Gerald was running around looking for an incubator to keep the arcane bubble in, Zilia took enough blood from the unconscious Witherton to bathe herself per the curse she picked up from the Carnival card game. While at the Mortuary, Gerald received a mysterious note (addressed to the ‘small necromancer’) offering him ‘raw materials’ at a great discount, but that he should come alone.

19 Sast, 1816 – Sigil

The next morning, the Gerald, with the rest of the party in tow, headed into the Warehouse District to see if the offer he received was legitimate. Once everyone was hidden in the surrounding area, he knocked on the door. A portly, oily man answered, trying to suss out if the diminutive fiend was carrying money and serious about purchasing. After an awkward back-and-forth, the two walked into the small warehouse to a trio of large crates sitting side-by-side. As the man reached up to grab a metal bar holding the hinged sides of the crates closed, his form blurred and melted into that of an attractive woman sporting a pair of leathery bat wings.

“I can’t believe you walked in here by yourself,” she said, pulling the bar out. As the sides slammed down, five ghouls shambled out, followed by what looked like a rotting elf and – most terrifyingly to the quasit necromancer – a demonic fly the size of a horse.

“You really shouldn’t have charmed me,” she said before disappearing. Gerald suddenly made the connection – it was the succubus he’d charmed during Hesken’s pit fights to lure in spectators.

Fortunately, Gerald had expected shenanigans, and reacted with a Command Undead on the singular rotting elf with the menacing gleam in its eye (distinguishable only to a professional such as Gerald). When the spell had no effect, he realized that he was dealing with a Maurezhi – a type of demon that could resurrect Ghouls. Garrick attempted to control the crowd of undead with Entangling Vines as Puma fired arrow after arrow at the hovering Chasme. Witherton used his Assimar abilities to get inside with Gerald and detonate his Sickening Radiance (taking care not to hit Zilia, who was just inside the door at this point).

The Chasme moved up behind the door, to try and use its maddening drone to try and incapacitate the party. Fortunately, everyone within range of the effect managed to shrug it off. Garrick blew the demon upwards with a Thunderwave (along with several of his allies) and Puma finished it off. Meanwhile, Gerald succumbed to the combination of Witherton’s radiation and several blows from the Ghouls, collapsing unconscious to the ground. Silt tentatively moved up to look through the warehouse door and noticed a shimmering silver aura surrounding the elf demon. Recognizing this as her destiny from the Carnival card game, she loosed an arrow at it.

The rotting elf demon attempted to raise one of the ghouls destroyed by Witherton’s ongoing spell effect, but had it immediately blown away as the irradiated area persisted. Unfortunately, this also caused Gerald to slip further towards his final end (fail a death save). Witherton dropped the spell and cast Healing Word, bringing the necromancer back as Puma provided cover fire. Misty finally made it into the warehouse and took out the remaining enemies. Gerald, pulling himself out of the Bag of Holding inside of which his familiar had attempted – and failed – to hide him, found a small glowing orb on the ground where the Maurezhi stood moments before.

Uncertain as to what to do with it – and to Silt’s horror – he ingested the object. Horrified, the owl-woman made several unsuccessful attempts to coax and/or force Gerald to throw it up. She resigned herself to following the diminutive demon around until nature took its course and the orb would re-appear. During that time, the rest of the party – led by Witherton – poked around in the warehouse, stealing anything they happened across. It didn’t amount to much.

As the party walked back to the Drake, they (literally) ran into Leonard and Kenneth escorting a bickering Mindflayer and Githyanki Knight who had just moments before been involved in an unusual altercation in the very same establishment that they were headed to (that being the Alehouse Drake). Faced with the prospect of having to give statements to the Harmonium, both of the perpetrators decided to make nice and, even more surprisingly, go out for drinks – though not at the Drake, this time.

20 Sast, 1816 – Sigil

As Witherton and Gerald required time to rest and recover from the warehouse debacle, the various members of the party decided to do so more shopping. Puma and Misty found some Pipes of the Sewers, Witherton put together a care package for the sect of wizards he had been training with in the Cinder Wastes, and Gerald (with Silt following) put in an order for some enchanted armor.

The party then reconvened back at the Alehouse Drake to discuss the as-of-yet untended matter of getting inside the Foundry and into the Gearsmith’s secret stash of crystal recordings.

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The Hand You're Dealt
A familiar face returns

As the party inspected the tent in which they stood and debated the wisdom of taking a rest, details began to settle into an unsettling realization: The green and gold motifs, the music drifting in from outside … they were in the carnival from the Illithid memories of Vassa Nova. The suspicions were confirmed when Gerald sent his invisible spy out to scout around and described the circle of brightly-painted wagons surrounding the missing Portal Gallery guests sitting quietly, watching an empty stage while being attended to by various carnies.

Nearly the entire party immediately began suffering from the traumatic memories of being killed and experiencing Vance’s transformation into the vampire mindflayer: Gerald sat in the corner rocking and quietly quacking to himself; Witherton simply passed out from exhaustion and began to sleepwalk until Garrick – who managed to maintain his composure – literally sat on top of him; Silt began having paranoid delusions; and Zilia was overcome with concern over her appearance after the travails of portal-hopping. Meanwhile, Misty, overcome with a desire to steal from the richly dressed patrons sitting out in the open, slipped from the tent without anyone noticing and began crawling around underneath the wagons.

Puma, confused as to why everyone seemed to be quietly freaking out, poked a hole in the tent and tried to get a read on the situation. One of the carnival workers was going around feeding the guests, who appeared to be charmed in some way, some sort of deep-fried dough covered in white power – which the assassin surmised (incorrectly) must be keeping everyone catatonic.

One of the carnival workers approached a tall, lean individual in a garish emerald and gold jester’s outfit, asking how much longer they would have to watch over the group. “Any minute now,” came the reply, as he regarded the invisible bat that had become a centipede and burrowed into the ground when Gerald began to freak out. “Really, whenever they decide to act,” he said, glancing over at the tent in which the party had hidden.

Ever-curious and lacking much in the way of self-control, Misty left her hiding place and approached the jester, greeting him with unexpected familiarity. About this time, Silt gathered her wits and burst out of the tent, hoping to keep the tabaxi-woman from saying or doing something irreversible – like robbing the helpless socialites blind, as was her obvious intent. A still uncertain-but-curious Puma followed cautiously behind, noticing that his target was indeed among the group and realizing that this may be the best chance to complete his assignment.

In entertaining their questions, the jester revealed that he was, in fact, the mysterious antagonist behind the Portal Gallery mishaps and disappearance, telling them how Caspian Galashield had stolen the idea for the Portal Gallery after enjoying the carnival’s signature ‘Magic Maze.’ He hesitated to let the members of the party have unfettered access to the helpless hostages, as the true target of his ire was Galashield, and that they were merely hapless pawns in his scheme to ruin Galashield.

The party was divided – several of them (Misty, Puma, and Gerald) really wanted to take advantage of the situation and interact freely with the group before returning to Sigil. The others felt that this would be a really bad idea, given that they were supposed to be saving them, and pointing out that having a bunch of grateful rich folks owing them a favor was not a bad thing. Jester, amused, proposed a card game with the stakes being that the winner would be the one to have five minutes alone with the enchanted crowd, no questions asked. With varying levels of enthusiasm, the entire party stepped up to a table that appeared next to them, as the smirking harlequin began to deal.

The game was simple: Each of player got 11 cards and would make a secret bid on how many rounds they thought they could win. The game would last two hands with the catch that the last card played for each hand would ‘activate’ as a card from the Deck of Many Things. The players would have to choose between holding and playing (what they hoped was) a favorable card versus winning the game. The effects would be held until after the game was over.

When the game was over, both Garrick and Silt had accomplished their bids – the later avoiding taking any tricks for either hand. As neither had any designs on the helpless party goers sitting just a few yards away, they both agreed to leave them alone. That was when the effects of the last cards played on the first hand kicked in (in order) …

  • Misty felt an odd tingling come over her (re-roll stats) and actually felt a little better afterwards.
  • Witherton was surprised when a Knight came riding into the carnival to swear fealty to him.
  • Puma found himself more musically proficient and suddenly able to play an instrument.
  • Gerald grew in wisdom and intelligence – though for a fiend, that might not be a good thing.
  • Zilia began to emanate a slight fey aura, becoming slightly more charismatic.
  • Garrick, unfortunately, lost all his magical items – though, fortunately, all he had was his glamoured armor.
  • Silt found that she could speak to the group as an Inspiring Leader might.

Then the next round of card effects began to manifest (again, in order) …

  • Misty inadvertently summoned a magical presence in the form of a woman who completely healed and restored everyone in the party.
  • Witherton … became pregnant … magically … with a kuo-toa growing inside a magical bubble within his abdomen.
  • Puma was allowed to instantly summon anyone he knew to his location for a minute; after toying with summoning the Lady (who couldn’t/wouldn’t be summoned), chose Galashield as a ‘gift’ to the jester. The shocked and confused businessman was then escorted to one of the covered wagons nearby and thrown inside where his screams were suddenly silenced by a disturbing, rhythmic hissing/humming.
  • Gerald found that he, like Silt before, could be an Inspiring Leader to the party
  • Zilia came down with a necrotic malady that required her to bathe in fresh blood once per week lest she begin to decay (lose Con)
  • Garrick, while reminiscing of his home back in the mountains, suddenly remembered that he was the master of a keep
  • Finally, Silt became aware of the existence of a foe that, should she find and defeat it in combat, would grow in skill and ability (level up)

After having a good laugh, the jester thanked everyone for playing along and bid them take the guests back to Sigil, where they would remember only that the group saved them from some undefined peril.

The party, accompanied by the two-score party guests, stepped back through the portal into the gallery – much to the surprise of the lone Harmonium officer keeping watch, as several days had passed since the incident began. Unfortunately, night was falling and the entire group would have to spend it in the gallery – which suited Puma just fine, as that meant his target would be close at hand …

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Of Rocks and Hard Places
Things almost go to plan

Elemental Plane of Earth

As the group debated which direction to explore next, Gerald remembered that his familiar could do a neat trick: Commanding his Quasit-clone to take the form of an invisible bat, he sent it to scout out the remaining tunnels. After running down a few dead-ends, the bat encountered a small crack though which it noticed a very faint glimmer. Taking the form of a centipede, Gerald’s spy squeezed through the crack into a larger open space filled with green crystals. A veritable garden of emerald and quarts crystals sat untouched – though it looked as though some Xorn may have tried nibbling at the edges of the space. Some unseen kept them from eating too much or venturing in too far, however.

Back at the fork where the party waited, Misty thought she heard a faint scratching somewhere in the packed earth. She started to say something, when Gerald mentioned something about a room full of emeralds and her train of thought was completely derailed. The larcenous tabaxi very nearly ran off by herself to claim what she imagined were mountains of treasure, but was convinced that running off alone would be suicidal.

Continuing on, the bat discovered the portals out of the area in two separate locations; one portal had only a single Rust Monster guarding it, while the second had four. The group decided to tackle the larger group first, sending Gerald’s zombies ahead carrying Witherton’s numerous sacks of ball bearings. The Aasimar unleashed his sickening radiance over the rust monsters as the zombies dumped a total of four thousand tiny iron spheres to distract them. Between Witherton’s spell, Garrick’s entanglement, and some arrows fired by Puma, the hapless creatures were quickly dispatched. The ever-frugal Witherton insisted the zombies pick up the ball bearings for reuse afterwards – a task the slow and clumsy zombies could only perform slowly. Meanwhile, the group debated the possible uses of rust monster corpses, stuffing two of them into Gerald’s (body) bag of holding.

As the party waited for the zombies, a rumbling shudder down the hall was the only warning they got as a small earthquake hit the area. Most of the party was able to dodge or deflect the rocks that tumbled down out of the ceiling. Unfortunately, Garrick was not quick enough to avoid being buried. The search for ball bearings was abandoned and the work of digging the Goliath out began in earnest. Soon, the druid was free and the group agreed that, treasure or no, it was not safe to linger on this plane any longer than they had to. With that, they headed towards the second portal, determined to at least copy the symbol down and see if it was one they had previously encountered.

The second portal was guarded by a lone rust monster, which barely had a chance to react before the party slew it. Unfortunately, the commotion roused a nest of Kruthiks hidden behind the wall – the scratching heard by Misty – which collapsed as they surged into the party. Gerald’s zombies took the brunt of the assault, eventually being cut down. Garrick, positioned behind them, soon found himself surrounded and overwhelmed, falling unconscious. Silt sent her alchemical apprentice over to produce a healing potion directly into the goliath’s mouth (in a totally platonic way).

The rest of the group fell back and used ranged attacks to blast away at the small horde of claws and teeth. A few of the more cunning creatures burrowed through the walls to either side of the tunnel to attack up close, but combined efforts of the group held them at bay. Eventually, the nest was cleared, Garrick was revived, and Gerald’s familiar had searched the nest and disappeared with anything of value before Misty could get her paws on it – including a mysterious pearl that radiated arcane energy. Before Silt could complete her Identify ritual, however, another distant rumble began echoing down the tunnels – prompting the group to grab their gear and run through the nearest portal …

???

… were they exited into the cramped confines of a tent. Outside, music was playing …

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Tunnel Trouble

Elemental Plane of Air

As the group woke from their rest – Witherton having been prevented from sleepwalking out the cave by Gerald’s zombies – a couple of them became aware of growling drifting in from outside the miniature cavern. Apparently, the Shadow Mastiff has roused and found itself without a pack and in an unfamiliar place with little-to-shadows. Taking turns throwing rations to the creature, the group lured it into the cave as they exited it. Garrick began to seal the beast inside, when they were startled by the sudden appearance of a large, blue-skinned man wearing garb that reminded them of distant lands to the east of their home, of rolling dunes of sand and a hot, unforgiving sun.

The Djinn, who identified himself as “(NAME)” the Fantastic, was patrolling what he described as his ‘domain’ when he happened on this ragtag band of outsiders apparently trapping an innocent creature in a – to his sensibilities – offending clump of filth that was polluting his clear pristine skies. Silt, being a native of the plane, had nothing but contempt for what she felt was a pompous, self-important member of the haute bourgeois. However, the party managed to deflect her distain for the pretentious powerhouse long enough to suggest they help the Djinn move the offending mote into a neighboring region, one presided over by another Djinn by the name of (NAME).

Ever quick on the uptake, Gerald wished for the means to help maximize the groups ability to turn the slight into a full-blown prank. It was a wish the Djinn was all too happy to grant; suddenly, everyone in the party could cast one 4th level spell of their choosing (regardless of class) to enhance what they were about to do. Gerald dumped the bodies of the other slain mastiffs into the cave and reanimated them; Misty (with some instruction from Gerald about the politics of Air Society) summoned a number of Smoke Mephits – whose very presence would be an offense – into the cave; Silt conjured a small pack of Blink Dogs and Pixies to cram into the cave; Garrick used Hallucinatory Terrain to further the offense by making the chunk of rock and dirt look and smell like something from the Para-Elemental Plane of Ooze; Witherton crammed Mordenkainen’s Faithful Hound into the cave; and finally, Izerah shaped a portion of the rock to resemble the object of their ridicule. Another wish was granted, extending the duration of the spell and the surprise package was sent on its way with a fond farewell … and some wise advice that they group should probably avoid the Plane of Air for a decent period of time. A prank of this magnitude would likely not be forgotten for a while.

Back at the portals, the group (Izerah included) decided that it was probably not a good idea to return to Limbo and opted for the portal to the unknown …

Elemental Plane of Earth

… and landed in a stuffy subterranean enclosure, surrounded on all sides by rock and soil (not a huge inconvenience, since everyone in the party had darkvision). Silt, being a flier from the Plane of Air, was NOT happy, struggling to maintain her composure. Inspecting what appeared to be a naturally occurring space, with no worked stone apart from the the exit portal, Garrick discovered a section of the wall that appeared to be the result of a small cave-in. Using his abilities to move earth – enhanced by the plane itself – the druid began uncovering a passage leading away.

Unfortunately, the vibrations caused by the Goliath’s efforts drew the attention of an Earth Elemental. Puma barely had time to shout a warning as two massive arms of stone burst from the wall to pummel Garrick. The party quickly moved up to support him, causing the elemental to withdraw back into the wall. Realizing that the entity was still nearby, the party readied actions and cautiously moved further into the tunnel, discovering several branching routes.

Izerah wondered over to look down the right-hand passage, resulting in another attack. Several readied actions drove it off a second time, but not before it landed a pair of brutal strikes on the githzerai monk. Fed up with hit-and-run tactics, Witherton approached the wall and began beating on it with his staff, determined to draw the elemental out and finish it off for good. Gerald and his zombies joined him and soon they found themselves face-to-face with their quarry. Having determined that this particular elemental was vulnerable to damage, they focused their attacks to use that particular energy type and made short work of the pest.

Garrick, being impatient, continued wandering down one of the tunnels, content to let the party catch up to him. Arriving at another intersection, he discovered another caved-in section. As the group debated excavating it, or going in the other direction to see if the caves looped around, Misty suddenly found herself surrounded by a trio of clawed arms erupting around her, as the ground beneath her split open to reveal a toothy maw – the kleptomanical tabaxi having attracted a Xorn with the coins and gems she kept secreted on her person. The group made short work of this second attacker and Misty, realizing that it was after her ‘shinies’ started hacking into the remains of the Xorn to see if it had anything of value in its gullet. She was rewarded with a small handful of gemstones – primarily emeralds.

The group then tried to get some bearing in the branching tunnels and discussed what direction they should go next.

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Flame & Shadow

Sigil

Tired of waiting around doing nothing, Gerald paced the Portal Gallery, looking for a painting he felt would get him somewhere close to where he imagined the party to be. He chose a landscape depicting green algae-covered water, framed by moss-covered stones and ferns sprouting randomly from grassy humps rising out of the mud, all sitting in the shadow of skinny, moss-covered trees. It was beautiful, in it’s own way; but beauty was not what drew the Necromancer – it was simply the fact that when Gerald thought of his companions, a swamp seemed to be the most fitting analogy.

Arborea

Splashing down into the scene, Gerald immediately noticed several details that had not been captured in the painting – the bodies of a nearly a dozen vegepygmies floating in the water around a pair of pillars surmounted by a circular symbol. Unable to discern anything about his comrades’ whereabouts from the pillars, he began looking for clues. Uncovering several distinctive sets of footprints in front of one of the pillars, he stepped through …

Elemental Plane of Fire
To find everyone huddled around the exit portal. Just a few feet beyond them the distortions could be seen in the sweltering heat of the air as flames of nearly every color danced across the ever-burning landscape. In the distance some of them could just make out the gleaming City of Brass, though it was far too distant for them to reach safely. Closer, though, they could see the next two portals sitting undisturbed in their own protective bubble. The group would have to find a way safely across the deadly expanse.

As the group tried to discern exactly what they risked by stepping outside of the portal’s aura, a mighty screech tore the air. A scarlet wyrmling came flying over a nearby hill. Landing on one of the far portals, a claw scraped against one of the blue sapphires in the circular symbol, resulting in a flash and a release of arcane energy that, while not fatal, was enough to drive the young Red Dragon off.

Tired of waiting further, Gerald cast protection from energy on himself and decided to brave the singular element that stood between them and their way out of the unyielding furnace of the plane. Zilia was able to cast the same spell, but only three times, so the group had to decide who would rely on speed, and who would get the arcane protection. Puma, Misty, and Silt all decided to run for it, completely disrobing and storing their belongings in Silt’s Bag of Holding before taking a deep breath and – quite literally – running for their lives. Garrick, Witherton, and finally Zillia joined them in the safe space around the two exit portals a few moments later.

Puma, in trying to uncover some meaning behind the symbols began voicing theories to himself which resulted in an unfamiliar voice popping into his head to compliment some of the ideas, but saying the system in place wasn’t that organized. Finally falling back on Silt’s insistence that the symbols with more of the onyx sections in them were somehow better than those without, the group stepped through into …

Plane of Shadow

A dark forest. Looking up into the night sky, no stars or moon could be seen. Neither could anyone hear any noise – not crickets, or owls, or even wind. Nothing but stillness and a world rendered in shades of gray. The exit portals were not immediately visible, instead, someone happened to catch a glimpse of them in the distance, where they appeared to be somewhat obscured behind an object of some sort.

The party decided to move stealthily to avoid any confrontations. Unfortunately, Zilia’s heavy stomps snapped a branch, the sound echoing in the darkness. It was returned by a unnerving howl in the distance. Dropping the attempt at stealth, the party ran full speed to the portals, not quite making it before a pack of Shadow Mastiffs, led by an Alpha with a fear-inducing howl, crested the hill.

Several members of the party were shaken by the eerie sound and would not approach the pack. Fortunately, a few members managed to shake off the effect and charged into the fray. It was also fortunately that a number of the adventurers managed to land some solid blows before the beasts counter-attacked, vanishing into the darkness. Nearly all of the creatures disappeared into the shadows, except for one that Garrick managed to entangle in an area of twisting vines and grasping weeds.

As the party continued to try and whittle down the pack – Witherton unleashing both a tremendous thunderclap and a sickening aura that made all within it start to glow a sickly green color – Gerald waded into the weeds and charmed the lone Mastiff, feeding it some of the meat he had been carrying in his own Bag of Holding. Once all of the other mastiffs had fallen, Gerald used his skill with animals (enhanced by the ongoing charm) to use the surviving member of the back as a mount.

Puma, in particular was interested in the thick post holding three gibbets and their skeletal occupants, which was the object partially obstructing the portals from the previous exit. A forth gibbet had been broken down, it’s marginally less decomposed contents revealing an interesting detail – the body had been pulled up against the bars of the cage, and a chunk of the skull removed in such a way that those of the party who had endured the memories of the vampire illithid were all too familiar with. But this amount of rust and decay indicated that this event could not have happened less than around twenty years ago.

Needing a rest, but afraid to do so in their current setting – mainly due to Witherton’s announcing their presence to everything in the region and furthered by the prospect of mindflayers being around – they began to debate which portal to use. Recognizing one of the symbols as having been on the portal to the Elemental Plane of Air back in the Feywild, the group decided to return to the relatively safe plane they knew over the one they did not.

Elemental Plane of Air

As Gerald cast Suggestion on the Shadow Mastiff, encouraging it to sleep. Garrick excavated a small floating moat of earth to create a cozy little cave in which the group could rest. Izerah, for her part, pulled out an ornately gilded tome from her Effecient Quiver and began to study it intently, growing in wisdom as she pored over the magical book that she had secretly ‘borrowed’ from her monastery back in Limbo.

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New Faces, New Places
In which a Limbo contest occurs

Feywild – 17 Sast, 1816 (Sigil Time)

Silt and Misty were frustrated that another guest had stepped into the gallery. As they peppered the purple skinned tiefling with questions, he looked around dejectedly. “Well, they’re not here,” he sighed, his form fading away to reveal a dark-furred tabaxi standing in his place, “I am Puma.” This only led to more questions, which cat-man was happy to answer. It turned out that he was an assassin, and that one of the guests at the gala had a contract out on them. Puma had hoped to catch his quarry unawares in one of the portals, but the unforeseen behavior of the portals and the missing guests threw a wrench into those plans.

Shrugging, the two adventurers returned to their debate as to whether they should go after Hesken, who had been thrown (in the form of a slug) through a portal, while three of their number has passed through the other portal. Eventually deciding to keep the majority of the party together, they followed after Witherton, Garrick, and Igor, with the mysterious Puma in tow.

Elemental Plane of Air

Witherton was roused from his long rest when the three figures appeared suddenly from the portal he had entered. Recognizing Silt and Misty, he emerged from hiding towing a bundle of Aaracokra corpses behind him. After successfully coaxing the owl-woman into stowing the bodies in her bag of holding for Gerald back in Sigil, the group spied a enormously large bird headed their way and decided to leap into one of the portals, emerging into a swirling of elemental chaos. Huddled on the small floating rock that held the portal they had just passed through, the group gazed out over the tumultuous ever-changing environment of Limbo.

Limbo

After some experimentation, the group realized that they could exert a measure of control and stability over small sections of the plane. Having spied what appeared to be a small island of tranquility some distance away, on which the next two portals stood waiting, they began their perilous journey across swirling vortices of unshaped matter and energy. As they got closer to their goal, they realized that they were not alone – there was a figure sitting calmly before the two portals. They tried to shout across to the individual, but either their voices did not carry outside of the small pockets of atmosphere they’d created, or the person was focused on something else.

Once they reached the floating isle and it’s inhabitant, the figure stood to reveal herself as a Githerzerai monk. Introducing herself as Izerah, the group noticed the painting of the portals she had been working intently on. The monk expressed curiosity at their recent appearance and purpose. The travelers explained, in general terms, the events that led to their current predicament, and their intent to continue through one of the two portals before them.

Intrigued by their tale, Izerah proposed a duel of Wills, for if they could prove able of surviving the uncertainty of Limbo, they would surely be able to handle the unknown lying beyond the next portal. The monk also confessed to wanting to test herself, as she was aspiring to greater enlightenment and capability in the spirit of her Order. Witherton was quick to step forward, asking “How do we begin?”

He received his answer when the ground beneath his feet turned to water.

Thinking quickly, Witherton pushes the water down and turns it into dirt beneath his feet. From his lower position, he secretly casts Hex on Izerah, giving her disadvantage on all her Will checks. From there, it was all down hill for the monk, as she was consistently subjugated to Witherton’s influence on the environment. Eventually ending up in a sphere of barbed wire, she yielded, still trying to figure out how she had been bested. Never one to pass up an opportunity, Misty (on behalf of Witherton, of course) requests Izerah’s painting of the portals as a reward for besting her.

As the group started considering which new portal to use, a hideous croaking laughter drew their attention to several Red Slaad surfing the elemental chaos towards them. The adventurers send a few arrows their way and bail, asking the Githzerai to join them. Her curiosity overriding her caution, she quickly packs up her supplies and follows them through the portal just before the Slaad reach them.

Arborea

Splashing down into a swamp, the group immediately prepares for the possible pursuit by the Slaad. Fortunately, the frog-like creatures either could not – or would not – use the portal. Puma turns to scan the area, spying the next set of portals sitting on one of the few stable dry patches of land in the area. The tabaxi assassin realizes they’re not alone, spying motion in the underbrush, but not detecting any of the expected reptilian or amphibious threats.

Moving part of the way to the portals, the party is suddenly assailed by stones being flung at them from the undergrowth by a hunting party of Vegepygmies. Seemingly making short work of their attackers, the group hurries to the portals, only to be enveloped by cloud of spores released by the Vegepymy chief hiding behind one of the portals. Most of the group was able to shrug off the poisonous effects, but Silt and Misty had unfortunately gasped when the small creature surprised them, taking in a damaging lungful. Silt eventually managed to vomit up the spores, but Misty succumbed to the toxins in her system and fell unconscious.

As Witherton worked to revive the tabaxi, the fallen forms of the Vegepygmies believed to be slain began to stir and regenerate, rising to fling more stones at the confused adventurers. Surely these miniscule plant-people could not be that big of a threat? Puma realized that the chief he had slain with his enchanted sword was unable to recover due to the arcane energies contained within. Informing Witherton and Silt, the three of them put their antagonists down permanently using a mixture of fire-, cold-, and necrotic-powered attacks.

The group opted to take a short rest as Izerah artistically rendered the portals – paying close attention to the symbols on them – and decided to move forward before being attacked by another hunting party. Stepping through, they found themselves quickly breaking a sweat in the intense heat of the Elemental Plane of Fire.

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Feywild Fatality
Pixies suck

In the Feywild, Igor meddled with the portals, attempting to get some sense of where they led. Upon trying to toss a string with a dead rat tied to the end, they pulled the strings back across the portals only to find the rats had been replaced – or possibly transformed – into twigs. It was impossible to tell. When the firbolg stuck his arm through, he got a sense of the weather and climate, but not much else to go on. All in all, things were not as certain as they would have liked. Eventually, Igor, Witherton, and Garrick picked a portal and walked through it.

When Hesken attempted to follow them, however, he found himself Confused by fairy magic and began wondering off into the field in which the portals were located. Silt, already unhappy at being shoved through the portal, soured even further as she fell victim to fairy trickery; the owl-woman was polymorphed into a massive Storm Giant, one that could not fit through the portals. Misty stayed with her friend, but took pains to avoid drawing any unwanted attention to herself from the invisible swarm of pixies that hovered around them.

Having stepped through one of the portals to the Elemental Plane of Air, Witherton, Igor, and Garrick noticed a couple of floating rocks in the distance bearing two more stone arches with different symbols from the ones they saw back in the Feywild. Lazily circling the portals was a pack of vulture-esque Aaracokra, who were now heading their direction. The trio quickly dispatched the scavengers in a fight punctuated by Witherton’s use of the magical Staff of Thunder & Lighting. As they debated which portal to take, the noticed some strange movement in one of the nearby clouds – the commotion had attracted a nearby Air Elemental, which turned out to be a bit tougher than the birdmen. Eventually, they were able to weaken the entity to where they were able to catch it in one of Kelmen’s elemental spheres. The three adventurers attempted to hide themselves in the sparse surroundings for a short rest. Unfortunately, the large form of the goliath druid was hard to hide. When a second Air Elemental arrived, drawn by the thunder wave(s) used in the previous battle, it dove straight for Garrick. After another short-but-brutal skirmish, the group decided to take turns on guard to allow for a short rest, before marking the portal they intended to take with chalk. About that time, a folded piece of parchment came floating in from the portal through which they had arrived.

Back in the Feywild, Hesken’s confusion took an unfortunate turn when he attack and instantly killed a sprite. A chorus of horrified gasps could be heard as the dragonborn was quickly Entangled, poisoned into unconsciousness, and polymorphed into a slug – which was then carried by invisible hands to the second portal and tossed through. Silt and Misty took pains to avoid drawing the fairies ire as the bird-woman tried to manipulate her massive form and pass the time playing dragon chess.

Landing with a thud on a sandy beach, Hesken – now back in his regular form, spotted a pair of new portals some distance away. As he began walking towards them, he realized that he was not alone – a group of Sahaugin came stalking ashore, their ill intent obvious. Blessed by both Paladine and using his natural abilities, Hesken drove all but three of the attackers back into the ocean while laying into the remaining three in combat. On the verge of success, the frightened members of the raiding squad attempted to launch a large shark at the dragonborn, succeeding only in killing one of their remaining fighters. Hesken withdrew to heal and see what would happen, not comfortable travelling through another portal by himself and potentially dividing the party even further.

The Sahaugin took the opportunity to summon a champion of their own, a Sahaugin Baron, who led the others ashore and proceeded to swarm the isolated Paladin. Despite fighting valiantly against overwhelming odds, Hesken was soon felled, his armored form dragged to the murky depths by the foul fish-men.

Back in the gallery, Gerald occupied himself with hors d’oeuvres and grumbled to no one in particular about the non-existence a plane such as the Feywild. After casting Suggestion to help Caspian Galashield in his desperate attempt to distract the other party goers and keep anyone else from wandering into the tampered portals, he found himself in conversation with another hired hand for one of the party’s guests. Apparently, their boss was among those who yet to reappear and they wanted to find out what was going on. After learning from Gerald that the rest of his group had disappeared into the (non-existent) Feywild, the mysterious stranger stepped through after them. Leaving the necromancer to wonder if this person too had stepped into non-existence.
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